Kampala Boys Sports Club hope Night Cricket will elevate standards

When they started out in 2013, it was all about fun. Winning was secondary as everyone in the fraternity was left in daze with how much excitement the floodlights had brought to the oval.

But before they came to Lugogo Cricket Ground, the lights had been an everyday occurrence for the Asian community at Patidar Samaj ground behind UMA Showground in Lugogo.

While there, they played on concrete as Team Wines & Spirits reigned supreme. But the notion by the organisers, Kampala Boys Sports Club, to move the annual competition to the home of cricket in Uganda (Lugogo) in 2014 has proved to be a masterstroke.

Although the passion of players and organisers has remained boundless, the competition has gradually hit new levels with each passing edition of the KBSC Premier League.

“We have put rules that add excitement and make everyone involved,” KBSC chairman Tejas Patel told Daily Monitor. “Before, some teams used to play with only Asians but now each of the franchises must field at least two Ugandan players in each game they play. We have set out to develop Ugandan talent as well.”

In 2013, the winners pocketed Shs5m and the runner’s consolation prize was Shs3m but that rose to Shs7.5m and Shs6m respectively last year. “It will even be bigger this year. At stake for the winner is Shs10m and Shs7.5m for the runner-up. We keep improving the prize money to increase competition. Now we need help from other corporate companies.”

Organising secretary Nirav Patel believes hard ball cricket will be played on these floodlights next season. “Last season, we had eight poles and the lights were 30-feet off the ground. Now they’re 70-feet in the air and we’ve replaced the poles with four permanent towers. Next year we want to bring six towers and put the lights at 100-feet. We want the very best.”

The tournament is played on a 16-over basis per innings but improved to 20 overs from the quarterfinals for this season that ends on August 21.

 

KBSC NIGHT CRICKET QUARTERS 
Yuva 91/10 G, Lions 94/4
Abacus 127/10 Damani 128/6

 

FORMER WINNERS 
2013: Wines & Spirits
2014: Wines & Spirits
2015: Aziz Damani

KBSC full committee:
Tejas Patel (chairman), Chirag Dave, Ketan Shukla, Daxesh Patel (assistant treasurer), Divyang Patel (secretary), Ghanshyam Patel (secretary), Hitesh Patel (treasurer), Bharat Patel, Nirav Patel (organizing sec), Ravi Patel, Kalpesh Patel, Sameer Thakkur
Sponsors:
Main sponsor - Aziz Damani, co-sponsors - AMI Africa, TransAfrica Assurance, Britannia Allied Ind Ltd, Krishna Construction Co. Ltd, Alliance Insurance, Jubilee Assurance, Jyoti Motors, Grand Thornton, Shumuk Group, Haandi Restaurant, Tej Uganda Ltd & Uganda Cricket Association.

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Africa Cricket Club working to keep machine well-oiled for topflight return next season

The genesis of cricket in Uganda was centred around the European and Asian communities that often gathered to play for fun and leisure in the early 1900s.

It was not until the early 1950s that some locals got fully engaged in the gentleman’s sport under Africa Cricket Club (ACC). Today, ACC is the oldest club.

On the flip side, ACC has been stuck in the National Men’s 50-Over Division Two League tier since relegation in 2011. “We were not playing responsibly at the time,” ACC senior player Sylvester Rokani recalls how demotion engulfed them.

For five straight years, ACC has jumped high but failed to get hold of the promotion key. Why? 
“Our belief is growing players and enjoying game but often, our upcoming talent has been snatched by big money teams as soon as they peak,” explained Rokani.

On Sunday, ACC continued their perfect start to the season making it two wins in as many matches with a 21-run victory over Premier at Budo Oval. That was preceded by the opening 24-run win over Mwiri at Entebbe on February 7. Clearly, there is something that has changed about the 2006 and 2007 top-flight champions.

“The team spirit and morale is excellent,” Rokani noted. “We secured a few sponsorships, signed some really important players which adds oomph.”

Unlike before, ACC has now got a kit sponsor in Case Medical Centre, whose proprietor Dr. Kato Sebbaale doubles as the club chairman. The club also generates funds from club members, who contribute annual subscription fees of Shs300,000 each.

The club has also successfully serenaded Kintu brothers Michael and Aggrey as well as Timothy Erumuka from Jinja-based Rounders and young guns like Gaddafi Jjunju from partner school King’s College Budo.

Michael’s knock of 25 off 35 and Emmanuel Odeng’s half-ton of 55 runs off 83 helped ACC set 194 in 49.2 overs. 
Then left-arm Timothy Erumuka single-handedly blew away Premier’s with figures of 7 for 39. Pace bowlers could be the thing for ACC this season since Odeng was also crucial with a fine spell of 6 for 23 in the win over Mwiri. With such developments in place, many will expect ACC returns to the big time next year.

ABOUT ACC: Started: 1950 Captain: Richard Lwamafa Twitter Handle: @AfricaACC

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Another Cricket Gear for Uganda

Our eighth container load of donated gear for Uganda left Bankstown Oval 25th November - thanks to Bankstown Sports Club - who, in case you don’t know, cover all the freight costs for the container each year to arrive at the Uganda Cricket Association. This container is expected to arrive in January 2015.

We greatly appreciate our volunteers who helped pack the 20 foot container... Brian Freedman, Marty Klumpp, Linsey Roworth, Eris Dignam, David Clifton – but special thanks go to Matt Clifton and his mates from uni: Josh Hall, Tim Bennett and Diego Garcia - thanks guys - it made the job so much quicker and easier for us oldies! 
See the photos of the latest container being packed.

 

Prepared by: Bankstown Sports Club.

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